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									2012/356/S        HALL FARM KENILWORTH ROAD KNOWLE

Application No:        2012/356/S

Ward/Area:             KNOWLE

Location:              HALL FARM KENILWORTH ROAD KNOWLE SOLIHULL

Date Registered:       13/04/2012

Applicant:             SPITFIRE PROPERTIES LLP

Proposal:              CONVERT EXISTING FARM BUILDINGS INTO 5 No.
                       RESIDENTIAL DWELLINGS AND DEMOLITION OF 4,941
                       SQUARE METRES OF MODERN BUILDINGS ON SITE AND
                       ERECTION OF 8 No. DWELLINGS WITH ASSOCIATED
                       PARKING AND LANDSCAPING.


Documents Online:
http://www.solihull.gov.uk/planning/dc/ViewAppDetail.asp?Y=2012&R=356

PROPOSAL

Full planning permission is sought for the conversion of two existing large two
storey barn buildings into 5 dwellings and the erection of 8 newly constructed
buildings on the site. The new construction would be in lieu of existing
industrial and agricultural buildings that are to be removed as part of this
application.

The footprint of the existing modern steel framed industrial and agricultural
buildings to be removed is 4,941sqm, whilst the footprint of the newly
constructed elements of the proposal equates to around 1,768sqm. The
proposal will therefore result in a significant reduction in terms of the ground
coverage of the site.

The 8 new build dwellings on the site consist of Plots 1 to 8. Plot 1 is to be a
thatched cottage that is located at the front of the site facing Kenilworth Road,
albeit set back approx. 50m from the road. Plot 2 is a replacement dwelling for
the existing dilapidated dwelling that is currently situated on the site, and Plots
3 – 8 are designed and sited to appear as a modern addition to the traditional
farm courtyard in a way that the exiting courtyard may have been expected to
develop over time. Serving plots 3 – 8 single storey garage blocks are also
proposed, one being internal to the proposed courtyard layout (as it involves
the partial conversion of an existing single storey range of buildings), and the
other forming the northern extremity of the planned courtyard arrangement.

Plot 1 is a two storey high detached thatched cottage with a single storey
addition to the side and an open sided double car port. It will have a ridge
height of 8m, an eaves height of 4.2m, a depth of 6m and a width of 16.6m. It
will provide 4 bedrooms, and will have its private amenity area to the side.

Plot 2 is to replace the existing farm dwelling currently on the site and is to be
situated in approximately the same position, facing into the farm courtyard. It
is of a Palladian design reminiscent of the middle to late 18 th Century. It is to
be two stories in height with accommodation within the roof space served by
dormer windows in the front and rear elevations, and a detached double
garage to the side is proposed. The ridge height of the dwelling will be 8.8m,
the eaves height will be 6.3m and the depth and width will both be 12m. The
detached double garage will measure 6.5m x 6.7m and be 4.3m in height.
Internally 6 bedrooms are proposed and there is to be a large amenity area to
the rear.

Plots 3, 4 and 5 consist of a row of three dwellings to designed to appear as a
modern interpretation of an agricultural threshing barn, with a tiled roof above
timber clad elevations that incorporate shallow projecting gabled elements.
The building is two stories in height and each unit will be provided with 4
bedrooms. The building in its entirety will have a length of 31.5m, a depth of
10.5m, a ridge height of 10.2m and an eaves height of 4.7m. The building is
orientated to face in to the courtyard and rear garden areas are to the rear
facing onto Kenilworth Road. Car parking is to be provided within a nearby
single storey garage block building.

Plot 6 is linked to Plots 3, 4 and 5 by a single storey covered way, and the
building is again to be externally faced in timber cladding with a tiled roof
above. This building will be 8m in height to the ridge of the roof and 4.7m to
the eaves. It will be 10.3m in width and 8m in depth. It will have 5 bedrooms
and a large rear garden to the rear. Car parking will be accommodated within
a nearby single storey garage block.

Plots 7 and 8 constitute 2 no. two storey dwellings located immediately
adjacent to the existing range of buildings with the site that are to be retained.
They are to be externally finished with a combination of timber cladding and
brickwork in their elevations, with a tiled pitched roof above.

Plot 7 will be 9.2m in height to the ridge and 4.5m to the eaves. It will be
12.1m in width and 9.7m in depth. Internally 5 bedrooms are proposed and
parking will be within a nearby single storey detached garage range.

Plot 8 is also to be 9.2m in height and 4.5m to the eaves, though will be
13.9m in width and 9.7m in depth. It will also provide for 5 bedrooms and
parking will be within a nearby single storey detached garage range.

Plots 9, 10 and 11 are to be located within the largest and most splendid of
the two existing two storey brick barns that are to be converted. This former
threshing barn is to be converted to provide 3 dwellings. Over three floors
internally. Existing openings have been retained and used (including the large
double height openings in the front and rear), and where new openings are
required to provide access and/or light to the rooms within they have been
kept to a minimum. The building has a width of 33.2m, a depth of 10.3m, a
ridge height of 9.5m and the eaves to the front are 2.4m, and to the rear they
are 5.2m.

Plot 9 is a 6 bed unit, Plot 10 is a 4 bed unit and Plot 11 is a 6 bed unit. Plot
11 has a basement in the position of what is advised is an existing capped off
concrete silo. Amenity areas are located to the rear and car parking is to be
provided within a shared nearby single storey garage block.

Plots 12 and 13 are to be conversions of two existing barns, incorporating the
linking of the two with a 2 storey extension (to Plot 12) and a two storey rear
extension to Plot 13. The buildings to be converted are a small single storey
barn measuring 13.5m by 5.9m, which is perpendicular and slightly offset from
the second barn which is two stories in height and measures 28.7m in length
x 5.2m in depth x 7.4m to the ridge of the roof and 4.5m to the eaves. As with
the proposal to convert the barn within which plots 9, 10 and 11 are to be
located, existing openings have been retained where possible and new
openings kept to a minimum.

Plot 12 involves the conversion of about half of the large barn and the entire
second smaller barn, linked with a two storey extension to be faced in timber
cladding. The extension is up to 6.5m in depth, 10m wide and is 7m to the
ridge of the roof. Four bedrooms are proposed.

Plot 13 seeks to convert the remaining half of the larger barn. The rear
extension will measure 7m x 5m and be 6.4m and 3.3m respectively to the
ridge and eaves of the roof. Three bedrooms are proposed and a detached
double garage is to be sited to the side/rear.

Turning now to the single storey garage blocks, the first is an ‘L’ shaped
building situated fairly centrally within the proposed extended courtyard
arrangement, part of which involves converting an existing building and part of
which is to be new build. It is to be up to 23m in length by 5m in depth, and
6m in height to the ridge of the roof.

The second garage block will follow a similar form though has an extended
and additional horizontal element of built form to the north. It will provide 6
double garages and a bin store and be 5.8m in height to its ridge and 2.4m to
the eaves.

In terms of general on site parking, there is to be 25 parking spaces to be
contained within garages/car ports, approximately 4 spaces on driveways
(plots 1 and 2), and 3 additional on site surface paring spaces.

CONSULTATION RESPONSES

Highway Engineers                        : Objection and recommend refusal due to
                                           unsustainable location of site.

Housing Strategy Officer                 : No objection subject to the applicant entering
                                           into a S106 Agreement to secure an off site
                                           affordable housing contribution.
Landscape Architects                     : No objections subject to conditions

Ecology                                  : Final Comments awaited

Environmental Protection                 : No objection subject to conditions

Environment Agency                       : No objection subject to conditions

Warwickshire Museum –                    : No objection subject to conditions
Archaeology

Severn Trent Water                       : No objection subject to conditions

Site Notice                              : 27 April 2012

Press Notice                             : 27 April 2012

Neighbours                               : 17 April 2012


REPRESENTATIONS

Two letters of objection have been received, including from the Knowle
Society. The issues raised are summarised as flows:

      Impact of the proposed access upon a right of way to an adjacent field.
      The site is within an unsustainable location
      Inappropriate development within the Green Belt with no demonstrated
       very special circumstances
      The residential conversion of the buildings to be converted will have a
       materially greater impact upon openness than the existing agricultural
       use
      Increased impact upon openness of Green Belt
      The stand alone cottage has no perceivable agricultural use
       whatsoever
      Not being able to find a viable employment use is not sufficient reason
       to permit a residential use
      A residential use will increase traffic levels beyond the current situation
      The proposal is not farm based diversification
      The removal of the agricultural buildings should not be seen as a
       reason for allowing replacement development on the site
      If approved 40% of the dwellings should be for affordable housing.

POLICY

RPG11 – Regional Planning Guidance for the West Midlands (2004)
RR1 – Rural renaissance
PA14 – Economic development and the rural economy
PA15 – Agriculture and farm diversification
T2 – Reducing the need to travel

Solihull UDP 2006

ENV2 – Urban Design
ENV13 – Protected Species
ENV14 – Trees and Woodlands
T1 – An Integrated and Sustainable Transport Strategy
T13 – Car Parking Provision
H1 – Provision of Housing Land
H4 – Affordable Housing
H5 – Density, Design and Quality of Development
C2 – Control of Development in the Green Belt

Solihull Draft Local Plan

Work has reached an advanced stage on preparing a development plan that
will replace the existing adopted UDP. This plan will provide the long term
spatial vision for how the borough’s towns, villages and countryside will
develop and change over the Plan period to 2028. The plan sets out to deliver
a strategy for promoting, distributing and delivering sustainable economic
growth whilst conserving and improving the character and quality of the
environment.

The draft Local Plan was released for a six week public consultation period of
representation which expired on 5th March 2012. The feedback from this
consultation will inform the adoption process of the Local Plan. A decision to
submit the Plan will be taken late Spring 2012 with a view to an independent
Examination in Public taking place later in 2012 and eventual adoption Spring
2013. The Plan is considered to be a material consideration, carrying an
element of weight having been through consultation processes.

The policies contained within the draft local plan that are relevant to this
proposal are:

P4 – Meeting Housing Needs
P5 – Provision of Land for Housing
P7 – Accessibility and Ease of Access
P9 – Climate Change
P10 – natural Environment
P14 – Amenity
P15 – Securing Quality Design
P17 – Green Belt/Countryside

Financial Considerations
The Localism Act makes provision for local financial considerations to be
taken into account as a material consideration in determining a planning
application. Such matters may include contributions as a result of section 106
agreements, as these are directly related to the development and necessary
to make the proposals acceptable, such considerations will carry significant
weight. Other financial considerations, including the benefit as a result of an
increased New Homes Bonus (paid to authorities based on the number of
new dwellings provided), are more general and whilst are a factor in favour of
the grant of permission will only carry limited weight (unless otherwise sated
in the later paragraphs of this report).

Planning for Growth

This Ministerial Statement advises that the Government's top priority in
reforming the planning system is to promote sustainable economic growth and
jobs. The Government's clear expectation is that the answer to development
and growth should wherever possible be 'yes', except where this would
compromise the key sustainable development principles set out in national
planning policy. When deciding whether to grant planning permission, local
planning authorities should support enterprise and facilitate housing,
economic and other forms of sustainable development.

Government Guidance

National Planning Policy Framework

SPGs

Rural Buildings Conversion Guidance
Vehicle Parking Standards and Green Travel Plans

PLANNING HISTORY

          2009/72 (09 Jul 10) [full plans approval] Change of use of existing
           farm to B1 office use with associated parking, including demolition
           of 4530sqm of modern buildings.


          2008/1681 (07 Nov 08) [full plans approval] Two storey side
           extension.

          2006/1093 (7 July 06) [conditional approval] Conversion and
           change of use of barns 2 & 4 into offices together with alterations to
           existing workshop barns 1 & 3.

          2005/2253 (22 Dec 05) [CLEUD approval] certificate of lawfulness
           for use of barn 1 as an existing workshop, machine shop, stores
           and HGV / tractor services shop. Barn 3 as an existing lawn mower
           repair and motorcycle workshop.
          2003/1729(01 Oct 03) [called in by secretary of stat] conversion of
           hall farm farmhouse to 3 dwellings including extension and garages,
           conversion of barns to 9 dwellings. Appeal: 3205 - : 14/03/2005:
           dismissed

          2001/661 (29 Jan 02) [outline approval] outline application for the
           erection of 8 dwellings. Appeal: 3014 - : 05/08/2002: dismissed

          2001/660 (29 Jan 02) [full plans approval] change of use of hall
           farm from 1 to 3 dwellings and change of use of traditional farm
           buildings/barns to 9 dwellings
           Appeal: 3014 - : 05/08/2002: dismissed

          1990/989 (13 Sep 90) [approved] first floor office accommodation

          1990/431 (02 Apr 90) [refused] first floor office accommodation

SITE DESCRIPTION

Hall Farm consists of 57.7ha of land on the north side of the B4101 Kenilworth
Road, about 1.5-km to the east of Knowle village centre. The farmstead itself
is roughly half way between the junctions of Kenilworth Road with Elvers
Green Lane and Watery Lane and is about 150 metres from the road. Facing
it on the opposite side of the Kenilworth Road is and area of woodland.

The farmstead itself has been intensively developed over the years and a
collection of modern agricultural buildings and industrial buildings has been
added to the original traditional brick farm buildings. Adjoining the farmstead,
to the east, is a modern detached dwelling known as Harvester House. The
northern access serves the commercial activities on the site but is also used
by farm traffic.

MAIN ISSUES

    Background;
    Green Belt and Design;
    Neighbour Amenity;
    Landscape;
    Ecology;
    Affordable Housing;
    Highways and Sustainability


APPRAISAL

Background

The site has a long and detailed planning history with intervention by the
Secretary of State.
Most recently planning permission was granted (2009/72) for the conversion
of existing barns to B1 offices, a proposal that involved the demolition of a
significant amount of the existing larger and more modern buildings on the
site. This scheme involved the applicants entering into a S106 Agreement to
improve the pavement route from the site to Knowle.

Prior to the above in 2006 (2006/1093) planning permission was granted to
convert 2 of the barns into B1 office accommodation, which included the
provision of 582sqm of floor space and provided for 46 car parking spaces. All
of the other uses at the site listed above would also exist.

In the appeal decision letter by the Secretary of State dated March 2005 for
conversion of the barns and farmhouse to residential he decided to refuse
planning permission. He considered that the proposal represented appropriate
development in the Green Belt and would have provided Green Belt benefits
in terms of enhancement of openness and improvement to the visual amenity.
However, more importantly he considered that the proposal was in an
unsustainable location and contrary to PPG13. The proposal was neither
required to meet the strategic housing target, nor accessible by other modes
of transport other than the car, it therefore did not comply with the then PPG3
and PPS7.

Furthermore, the Secretary of State was not persuaded that a commercial use
would not be viable or that possible commercial uses of the site would be so
much less sustainable than a residential use.

Green Belt

Policy C1 of the UDP designates the site within the Green Belt. Policy C2
states that development will not be permitted in the Green Belt unless it is for
a limited few categories of development. One such category includes the re-
use of buildings, provided that the new use and any associated use of land
surrounding the building do not conflict with, or have a materially greater
impact on the openness of the Green Belt and the purpose of including land in
it. The form, bulk and general design of the buildings must also be in keeping
with their surroundings and the buildings themselves must be of permanent
and substantial construction and capable of conversion without major
reconstruction. Other categories include the replacement and limited
extensions of existing dwellings.

Policy C8 of the UDP seeks to enhance and safeguard the most important
and vulnerable areas of the countryside and mitigate the adverse effects of
development.

Guidance relating to development on a national level is offered within the
NPPF. Here is advises that, inter alia, the following forms of development are
appropriate within the Green Belt:
      Replacement of a building provided that it is within the same use and
       not materially larger than the one that it replaces;

      Limited infilling or the partial or complete redevelopment of previously
       developed sites (brownfield land), whether redundant or in continuing
       use (excluding temporary buildings), which would not have a greater
       impact on the openness of the Green Belt and the purpose of including
       land within it than the existing development;

      Re-use of buildings provided that the buildings are of permanent and
       substantial construction.

The advice contained within the NPPF, which replaces all previous PPGs and
PPSs is a material consideration that, carries a significant amount of weight in
the assessment and determination of this application.

Given the nature of the proposal that is before you for determination, the
proposal involves development that falls into all three of the above categories.

The Barn Conversions

Given that Plots 9 to 13 are to be contained within the existing brick built
barns at the site, the third of the above criteria is clearly relevant to the
application

The barns proposed for conversion already exist and their conversion would,
in principle, have no greater impact on the openness of the Green Belt. The
structural survey provided confirms that they are all permanent and
substantial construction and capable of conversion. This view was confirmed
by the Inspector and First Secretary in considering the previous schemes.

Existing openings have been retained wherever possible, and new openings
have been kept to a minimum and carefully integrated into the scheme to
ensure there is no over proliferation of new apertures, and to ensure that the
character and appearance of the barns is maintained. Where extensions are
proposed (i.e. to plots 12 and 13), they are suitably designed and subservient
to the existing barns and do not detract unduly from the integrity of the
existing structures.

It is noted that a basement is proposed to Plot 11, resulting in a building with 4
internal stories. It is considered that it is unusual to find a barn, converted or
otherwise, with such a basement though the applicants advise that there is an
existing capped off concrete silo at that location that the basement will infill,
and in any case given its low level siting it will not be unduly visible from
outside of the site.

It is therefore considered that, subject to information relating to boundary
treatment and extent of residential curtilages, the barn conversion element of
the scheme complies with both Policy C2 and NPPF guidance relating to the
re-use of buildings within the Green Belt.
Replacement Dwelling
The existing dwelling on the site is in a state of poor repair. It is a substantial
dwelling and is roughly 12 x 12m in floor area and 9m in height to the ridge of
the roof. In comparison, the proposed dwelling is almost identical in floor
areas and is slightly lower in height. Given that the design of the dwelling, in
its aforementioned Palladian style, is considered to be acceptable, it is
considered that the proposed replacement dwelling is not materially larger
than the one that it is to replace and therefore compliant with both Policy C2
and NPPF guidance relating to the erection of replacement dwellings.

New Build Dwellings
Plots 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8, and the detached\garaging buildings (save for part of
one of the blocks which involves a conversion of an existing building)
represent new build detached dwellings. Although there is no scope for this
under normal circumstances within the UDP, given that the site has a varied
established use, a great of deal of which is commercial/industrial, it is
considered that the site constitutes previously developed land. As such, in
accordance with NPPF advice above, redevelopment can be acceptable if it
results in no material harm to the openness of the Green Belt.

It is noted that 4,941sqm of existing modern steel framed buildings will be
removed from the site, the vast majority of which, is located to the east of the
existing traditional farm courtyard complex, has an authorised commercial use
as an abattoir, meat processing plant, vehicle repair workshop and a
lawnmower/repair workshop. These buildings are of functional, modern and
utilitarian appearance and have a maximum height of up to 8m.

The proposed new build dwellings will replace these buildings to be removed,
and collectively they have a footprint of around 1,768sqm. This is a
considerable reduction in terms of plot coverage. Further, the proposed new
build have been carefully designed to reproduce how the existing traditional
brick built building courtyard may have evolved and grown over time, using a
contemporary take on the development of additional two storey threshing
barns. Whilst they, and particular plots 6 to 3, are relatively tall at up to 10.2m
in height their improved appearance and reduction in scale and massing
ensures that the openness of the Green Belt and visual amenities of the
locality are drastically improved at this location compared to the existing
situation.

The above notwithstanding, care should be taken to control the extent of
residential curtilages, and as such a condition is suggested to agree the exact
extent of areas to be used as garden and areas to be uses as
orchard/paddocks.

Concern has been raised at the form and location of the thatched cottage at
the front of the site. The design principles behind this (which reflect those of
the siting and design of the other new builds) are that the farmstead may have
developed (should it have developed to such a size as proposed by the other
buildings that collectively form the larger proposed farm courtyard area) the
requirement for an onsite farm manager. If such a situation did occur
accommodation would have likely to have been simple and rustic as per the
proposed Plot 1. In any case, in terms of impact upon openness, it is to be
built in the same approximate position as the easternmost part of the existing
abattoir building and will not, therefore, protrude materially further into the
Green Belt than the existing buildings on site.

It is considered that the proposed new dwellings will not be materially more
harmful to the openness of the Green Belt than the existing buildings on this
previously developed site. In fact, it is considered that they represent a
marked improvement.

Having regard to the above this element of the proposal is compliant with
NPPF advice and represents appropriate development within the Green Belt.

Neighbour Amenity

There is only dwelling situated in close proximity to the site; that being
Harvester House to the east of the site. The house here (which is a
farmhouse) is situated right at the back of its plot will all amenity and drive
areas located at the front. It is separated from the rear gardens of plots 12
and 13 by an area of land that the occupiers use a chicken run area.

Harvester House is located\around 16m from the rear of the nearest part of
Plot 12, and approx. 21m from the rear of the nearest part of Plot 13. It is
considered that these separation distances are sufficient to ensure no undue
loss of privacy or overbearing impact.

Having regard to the above it is considered that the proposal is compliant with
Policy ENV2 of the adopted Solihull UDP 2006.

Landscape

An Arboricultural report and Tree Condition Survey has been prepared and
submitted and as part of the application. The report found that there are 39
existing trees, tree groups and areas of hedgerow either on the site on upon
its boundaries, 14 of which require removal to facilitate the development. The
trees to be removed are all C grade trees and consist of sycamore, ash, goat
willow, beech, apple, magnolia, lilac, Lawson cypress, plum and holly. The
remainder of the trees are to be retained.

In addition, a landscape plan is submitted indicating new tree planting on the
site, which will serve to reduce the impact of the proposed tree removals and
will serve to improve the age and species diversity of the tree resource. The
tree species selection will aim to integrate the site within the wider landscape
whist providing an attractive environment for future residents.

The application has been assessed by your Landscape Architects. They raise
no objections to the proposal, subject to conditions. The proposal is therefore
considered compliant with Policy ENV14 of the adopted Solihull UDP 2006.
Ecology

Your Ecologists requested additional ecology work be undertaken and
submitted for consideration. Officers are at present awaiting this additional
information and hence the final views of your Ecologists have not been
received. Once the information has been submitted and then considered by
your Ecologists, their final views will be reported to Members via an update
note at the meeting.

Affordable Housing

Policy H4 of the adopted UDP advises that on sites comprising of 15
dwellings or more, or sites that have an area of 0.5ha or more, should be
provided with 40% affordable housing, or in exceptional circumstances a
contribution should be paid of lieu of on site affordable housing for the
provision of affordable housing elsewhere in the borough.

The adopted SPG on Affordable Housing (which is designed to be read in
conjunction with Policy H4) advises that the 40% figure as set out in Policy H4
is a target, and that affordable housing targets will be subject to discussion on
a site by site basis. It advises that the Council will adopt a flexible approach
taking into account aspects such as local needs, the nature of the local
residential area and site characteristics. The SPG also accepts that not all
sites will be suitable to achieve the 40% affordable target. In this instance
40% of 13 units would amount to 5.2 units and it is usual that the figure is
rounded to the nearest whole number.

In attempt to identify a registered affordable housing site provider to take on
some of the proposed units as affordable housing, the applicant approached
Bromford Housing Association, West Mercia Housing Association, Solihull
Community Housing, Midland Heart Housing Association and Waterloo
Housing Association.

Bromford HA confirmed that the site was of too small a scale to be of interest
to them.

West Mercia advised that the size of the properties and market values were
not suitable for affordable housing and that service charges and ground rents
that will be in operation at the site to secure the management and
maintenance of the site were of concern as they would impact on affordability.
In addition, they advised that 5 units were below their standard operation
requirements, which focussed on schemes of ten units or more.

Solihull Community Housing advised that they were not interested for similar
reasons to West Mercia. They believed that other S106 opportunities in the
borough would offer far better value for money.

Midland Heart declined to progress with the scheme as the property values
and service charges made it unsuitable for provision of affordable homes.
Waterloo confirmed that they would be focussing on their existing HCA
programme commitments and as the current allocation for the Solihull area is
for affordable rent with no non-grant units they had no interest in the
opportunity being offered.

It is of no surprise, based on experiences of other recent similar schemes
elsewhere in the area, that no housing associations expressed an interest in
the site, given the relatively remote location of the site, the size and high
quality of the housing units proposed, and the associated service charge
costs required to ensure that the private roadways, substantial communal
spaces and sustainability initiatives are maintained to adequate levels.

Given the above, in this instance it is considered that a more appropriate form
of affordable housing contribution is through the provision of a commuted sum
to provide affordable housing elsewhere in the area. Your Housing Strategy
Officer has confirmed that he agrees with this approach as there is no
reasonable likelihood of a registered provider being prepared to take on
dwellings at the site for the reasons provided by the applicant, and he
therefore raises no objections to, in this instance, the affordable housing
requirement being met by an affordable housing contribution of £250,000, to
be secured by a S106 Agreement.

The proposal is therefore compliant with Policy H4 of the adopted Solihull
UDP 2006.

Highways and Sustainability

The development is for the conversion of existing buildings into 5 residential
units and demolition of further existing buildings and construction of 8 new
dwellings.

The site has a long and detailed planning history with intervention by the
Secretary of State. The site has a permitted use as a working farm, a meat
processing plant, a vehicle repair workshop, a lawn mower\repair workshop
and an abattoir.

The most recent intervention by the Secretary of State was in 2005, when he
considered an application for conversion of the barns and farmhouse to a
residential use. He decided to refuse planning permission on the grounds the
proposal was in an unsustainable location (in terms of accessibility) and
contrary to PPG13.

In 2006 planning permission was granted to convert 2 of the barns into B1
office accommodation, which included the provision of 582sqm of floor space
and provided for 46 car parking spaces. In 2009 further permission for office
development was granted for a circa 1,887sqm of office space. A S106
contribution was secured as part of this application to improve the footway link
between site and Knowle Village Centre and the existing ‘Heart of England’
Taxi-bus service.
The applicants are again proposing, as part of the application that is before
you for determination, a financial contribution towards improvements to the
existing footway along Kenilworth Road between the site and Knowle.

Policy
In considering the development against current and emerging Policies,
highway officers have paid regard to:

National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF)

Para 17 of NPPF states that within the overarching roles that the planning
system ought to play, a set of core land-use planning principles should
underpin both plan-making and decision-taking. These 12 principles are that
planning should, inter-alia, actively manage patterns of growth to make the
fullest possible use of public transport, walking and cycling, and focus
significant development in locations which are or can be made sustainable.

Para 34 of NPPF states ‘Plans and decisions should ensure developments
that generate significant movement are located where the need to travel will
be minimised and the use of sustainable transport modes can be
maximised. However this needs to take account of policies set out
elsewhere in the Framework, particularly in rural areas.

Para 35 of NPPF states that plans should protect and exploit opportunities
for the use of sustainable transport modes for the movement of goods or
people. Therefore, developments should be located and designed where
practical to:-

   ● accommodate the efficient delivery of goods and supplies;

   ● give priority to pedestrian and cycle movements, and have access to
     high quality public transport facilities;

   ● create safe and secure layouts which minimise conflicts between
     traffic and cyclists or pedestrians, avoiding street clutter and where
     appropriate establishing home zones;

   ● incorporate facilities for charging plug-in and other ultra-low emission
     vehicles; and

      consider the needs of people with disabilities by all modes of
       transport.

Para 55 of NPPF states that to promote sustainable development in rural
areas, housing should be located where it will enhance or maintain the
vitality of rural communities. For example, where there are groups of
smaller settlements, development in one village may support services in a
village nearby. Local planning authorities should avoid new isolated homes
in the countryside unless there are special circumstances such as:
      the essential need for a rural worker to live permanently at or near
       their place of work in the countryside; or

      where such development would represent the optimal viable use of a
       heritage asset or would be appropriate enabling development to
       secure the future of heritage assets; or

      where the development would re-use redundant or disused buildings
       and lead to an enhancement to the immediate setting; or

      the exceptional quality or innovative nature of the design of the
       dwelling. Such a design should:
              –– be truly outstanding or innovative, helping to raise
              standards of design more generally in rural areas;
              –– reflect the highest standards in architecture;
              –– significantly enhance its immediate setting; and,
              –– be sensitive to the defining characteristics of the local area.

Solihull UDP

Policy T1 of the UDP states that;

The Council will expect all development proposals that generate traffic to
contribute positively towards the safe, efficient and easy movement of
people and goods throughout the Borough in order to create an integrated
and sustainable transport network for Solihull.

Transport Assessments will be required for development proposals that are
likely to have significant transport implications.

The Council will expect proposals for new development to satisfy the
following criteria:

      Minimise the need to travel;

      Locate where easy access can be gained by a choice of means of
       transport;

      Promote improved safety and convenience of travel for everyone;
       and

      Support the objectives of the Local Transport Plan.


Solihull Draft Local Plan

Draft Policy P7:

Part A of Draft Policy P7 states ‘All new development should be focused in the
most accessible locations and seek to enhance existing accessibility levels
and promote ease of access.
Part A goes on to state that development will be expected to meet the
following accessibility criteria, unless justified by local circumstances.

Proposed housing development should be;

• Within an 800m walk distance of a primary school, doctor’s surgery and food
shop offering a range of fresh food; and

• Within a 400m walk distance of a bus stop served by a commercial high
frequency bus service (daytime frequency of 15 minutes or better) providing
access to local and regional employment and retail centres; and / or

• Within an 800m walk distance of a rail station providing high frequency
services (3 or more per hour during peak periods) to local and regional
employment and retail centres.

Part A also states that residential development proposals for fewer than 3
dwellings in urban areas west of M42 and within rural settlements will be
exempt from the criteria set out above.

Part B of Draft Policy P7 states that ‘Access to development from the core
walking, cycling, public transport and road networks will be expected to be:
i. Safe, attractive, overlooked and direct on foot, by bicycle and from public
transport;
ii. Safe for those vehicles which need to access the development; and
iii. Assessed in accordance with Policy P15 ‘Securing Design Quality’ in the
Local Plan.

During the consultation period of the Draft Local Plan, Draft Policy P7 did not
receive a significant number of objections nor were any of the objections
received irresolvable. Overall, it is considered that the Draft Local Plan is fully
commensurate with the NPPF and that the Polices contained within it will
continue to attract greater weight the closer the plan moves forward to
adoption.

The Development Site

The development site is located from the B4101 Kenilworth Road,
approximately 1.4km east of the centre of Knowle Village and 5.8km south-
west of the centre of Balsall Common Village.

The B4101 Kenilworth Road is a single carriageway highway subject to a
40mph speed limit. The site is accessed via two priority junctions, each of
which can accommodate 2-way movements to/from the site. The northern
access road has a carriageway width of approximately 6 metres, whereas the
southern access road has a carriageway width of approximately 4 metres.
The junctions are located within 70 metres of each other.
The applicant completed a speed survey of the B4101 Kenilworth Road
between 24 March 2012 and 28 March 2012 and average weekday 85th
percentile speeds were recorded as 44mph eastbound and 41mph
westbound. The survey recorded around 5,600 weekday two-way daily traffic
movements.

Accessibility

The site is considered to be within a rural location. Whilst there is a footway
between site and Knowle Village Centre, the route is, for the most part,
narrow, unlit and not overlooked, albeit the applicant is willing fund a scheme
to widen the footway where considered necessary.

There are no bus services running past the site although residents would
have access to the ‘Heart of England’ taxi-bus service. The taxi-bus service
operates within the rural area between Solihull and Coventry, and offers a
door to door service for local residents. The service operates between the
hours of 08:00 and 19:30, Monday to Saturday and passengers must pre-
register with the operator to use the service and trips are pre-booked. Hence
the service is not a timetabled ‘turn-up and go’ service. There are three taxi-
buses in circulation within the Heart of England area with capacity for
approximately 11 passengers per bus. The service is subsidised by the
Integrated Transport Authority (Centro).

The approximate distance to local services and facilities are outlined in the
table below:

                              Distance
Fresh Food                     1400m
Education (Primary)            1400m
Education (Secondary)          1500m
GP Surgery                     1700m
Regular Bus Services           1300m
Rail Services                  3500m

The walking distances to local services and facilities identified above are
outside the parameters set out in Draft Policy P7 of the Solihull Draft Local
Plan. The distances are also outside the acceptable walking distance of
800m as identified within the Chartered Institute of Highways and
Transportation publication ‘Designing for Journeys on Foot’ (2001, table
3.2).

It is also not just linear distance which is important. The nature and
attractiveness of walking and cycling routes plays a significant factor in
influencing travel behavior. The walking/cycling route between site and
Knowle Village (where most day-to-day services and facilities are located) is
not an environment conducive to walking or cycling for regular
shopping/work/school trips. It would not be a suitable route for young
children to use for cycling to school, irrespective of whether they were
accompanied by an adult.
Given that the site is located outside acceptable walking and cycling distances
(as defined by emerging local policy and national guidance) and the walking
and cycling routes to/from site are unlikely to be conducive to walking and
cycling, it is not considered that the site is located in a sustainable location (in
terms of accessibility).

Weight must also be attached to the decision of the Secretary of State in 2005
where he considered residential development at Hall Farm unacceptable on
the grounds of accessibility.

Members will be aware that the site is subject to an extant consent for circa
4,300 sqm of office space. Whilst it was accepted at the time that the site was
not in an accessible location, officers were mindful of the prevailing transport
policy (PPG13) at the time which highlighted the importance of promoting
adequate employment opportunities in rural areas to reduce the need for long-
distance out-commuting to jobs in urban areas. PPG13 went on to state that
diversification of agricultural businesses would increasingly likely to lead to
proposals for conversion or re-use of existing farm buildings for other
business purposes, possibly in remote locations. With this in mind and given
the agreed contribution to improve walking links to site and improve and the
existing taxi bus service as well as a condition securing a robust travel plan,
the development was considered, on balance, to be acceptable. However,
these circumstances are not applicable for the proposed development.

Traffic and Safety
The applicant has obtained Personal Injury Accident (PIA) data in the vicinity
of the Hall Farm site. The accident data covers a 5-year period between
1/1/2007 and 31/12/2011 and the B4101 Kenilworth Road between the
junctions of Wilsons Road and Fen End Road. A total of 9 accidents were
identified including one fatal, 2 serious and 6 slight accidents.

The fatal accident occurred some way from the site within the built up area of
Knowle when a moped skidded and struck an elderly person. One accident
was recorded in the immediate vicinity of the site, when the road was subject
to a national speed limit regulation (since reduced to 40mph). The accident
was a serious classification involving a motor bike and car. The motor bike
was identified as driving recklessly and lost control of the vehicle. No
accidents were recorded as a result of manoeuvres into/from Hall Farm.

Visibility splays of 2.4m x 116m and 2.4m x 110m (left and right respectively)
can be achieved at the northern site access (which is to form the vehicular
access into site). The recorded average 85th percentile speeds of 44mph and
41mph (eastbound and westbound respectively) would require a visibility
splay of 120m in both directions. Whilst the existing visibility falls just short of
design standards, officers’ have regard to the fact that there have been no
accidents at the site access in the last five years that would suggest that the
shortfall in visibility is directly impacting upon highway safety. Given that the
proposed development would generate fewer trips that the current and extant
uses, this level of visibility is considered acceptable.
Work undertaken as part of the previous application suggested that the
historic and current use generates around 260 daily two-way trips (as well as
a large number of tractor/trailer movements which have not been included).
Based on a five-day week, this equates to 1,300 weekly two-way trips.

The extant B1 office use could generate around 330 daily two-way trips.
Based on a five-day working week, this would equate to 1,650 weekly two-
way trips

For the current application, the applicant suggests that the proposed
development could generate 156 two-way daily trips, but over a seven day
period. Based on a seven-day week, this would equate to 1,092 weekly trips.

The proposed development would generate fewer trips than the current and
potential uses of the site and there are no identified safety issues with the
existing access arrangements. The development is, therefore, considered
acceptable from a traffic and safety perspective.

Summary
The development is considered acceptable in both traffic and highway safety
terms. However, it is considered that the site is located in an unsustainable
location for residential development.

The transportation and highway recommendation is one of refusal for the
following reason:-

The proposed development if or a group of isolated homes in the countryside
and is not located where easy access can be gained by a choice in the means
of transport to/from local services, facilities and employment. Therefore, this is
contrary to Policy T1 of the Solihull UDP 2006 and the National Planning
Policy Framework.

Balancing Exercise

It is therefore apparent, whilst there are no objections to the highway safety
implications of the proposal, your Highway Engineers object to the proposal
given the unsustainable location of the site, which is a view that has
previously been shared by the Secretary of State in considering past
proposals for residential development at the site.

However, this notwithstanding, other material planning factors in support of
the application that must be balanced against this issue relate to:

     the general improvement to the appearance and rural character of the
       site and the openness of the Green Belt created by the proposal. In
       particular the removal of the more modern industrial buildings &
       reduction in footprint.
     The applicants advise that the property has been available on the
      market since July 2010 and marketed for the consented B1 office use
      and other commercial purposes. Only two parties have expressed an
      interest in the site. The first from a care operator and the second from
      a residential developer. The care home operator required complete
      demolition of all buildings to accommodate a new purpose built
      building. The letting agents for the site advise that the lack of demand
      for commercial uses is due to general economic conditions and the
      lack of demand in the commercial sector; the site’s constraints (i.e.
      need to retain existing buildings); and the over supply of commercial
      space within the M32 Solihull corridor.

In addition, since the past applications at the site for residential development
have been considered, national planning policy in the form of the NPPF have
come into force which dictates that the proposal constitutes appropriate
development. As stated previously in this report, paragraph 55 of the NPPF
states, inter alia, isolated homes in the countryside should be avoided unless
there are special circumstances such as where the development would re-use
redundant or disused buildings and lead to an enhancement to the immediate
setting.

The proposal clearly relates, in part, to the re-use of redundant or disused
buildings, and will also enhance the immediate setting of the site. This was a
policy consideration that was not previously in place during the assessment of
previous residential schemes at the site. As such, in this instance it is
considered that in determining the finally balanced issues that are prevalent in
this case, on balance the improvements to the character, appearance and
openness of the area and Green Belt and the change in planning policy
(namely para 55 of the NPPF) fall in favour of the proposal to the extent that
the concerns raised by your Highway Engineers are outweighed by the other
material factors in favour of the proposal. This is subject to the applicants
again entering into a Section 106 Agreement to provide secure the
improvements of the footway link along Kenilworth Road between the site and
Knowle.

CONCLUSION

This application seeks consent to convert existing brick built barns at the site
to provide 5 dwellings, and to demolish 4,941sqm of existing agricultural and
industrial buildings to be replaced with 8 new dwellings. The buildings to be
converted are capable of being so without major rebuild or alteration works,
and the new build dwellings will result in a marked improvement to the
character, appearance and openness of the area. The proposal, that seeks to
redevelop this previously developed site, therefore constitutes appropriate
development in the Green Belt.

The proposal will not result in any undue impact upon neighbour amenity and
will not prejudice the health and well being of any important trees on or near
to the site. Although no affordable housing will be provided on site, a
contribution via a S106 agreement for such housing provision elsewhere will
be provided.

Notwithstanding the above, the site is located within an unsustainable
location. However due to the considerable improvements to the character,
appearance and openness of the site that would be generated by the
proposal, and the guidance in relation to such issues contained within the
NPPF, on balance it is considered that the environmental benefits of the
scheme justify the grant of permission for this unsustainable form of
development in highway terms.

RECOMMENDATION

In view of the above this application is recommended for approval subject to
the following conditions, and subject to the applicant entering a S106
Agreement to contribute £250,000 towards the provision of affordable housing
elsewhere in the borough and for improvements to the footway along
Kenilworth Road between the site and Knowle:
(1) The development hereby permitted shall not be carried out except in
complete accordance with the details shown on the submitted plans,
numbers:

To ensure compliance with the approved plans and details to safeguard
amenity and the quality of the environment in accordance with Policy ENV2 of
the Solihull Unitary Development Plan 2006.

(2) The development hereby permitted shall be begun before the expiration of
three years from the date of this permission.

Pursuant to the requirements of Section 51 of the Planning and Compulsory
Purchase Act 2004.

(3) No building works shall be commenced until samples of all bricks, tiles and
other materials to be used in the external elevations have been submitted to
and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority. Development shall
be carried out in accordance with the approved details.

To safeguard the visual amenities of the area in accordance with Policy ENV2
of the Solihull Unitary Development Plan 2006.

(4) Notwithstanding the provisions of the Town and Country Planning General
Permitted Development Order 1995 (or any Order revoking and re-enacting
that Order) no development included within Schedule 2, Part 1, Class A - E
shall be carried out.

To protect the visual amenities of the area and the residential amenities of
adjacent dwelling(s) in accordance with policy ENV2 of the Solihull Unitary
Development Plan 2006.
(5) Notwithstanding the provisions of the Town and Country Planning
(General Permitted Development) Order 1995 (or any Order revoking and re-
enacting that Order) no windows, dormer windows or other openings (other
than those expressly authorised by this permission) shall be constructed or
installed.

To protect the residential amenities of adjacent dwelling/s and the character
and appearance of the dwellings in accordance with policy ENV2 of the
Solihull Unitary Development Plan 2006.

(6) All existing buildings on the site shown on Drawing No. AR-050-001 to be
demolished shall be demolished and all rubble and other waste material
removed therefrom before the replacement buildings hereby approved
commences or by such further time as may be agreed in writing by the Local
Planning Authority.

In order to secure the satisfactory development of the site in accordance with
Policy ENV2 and C2 of the adopted Solihull UDP 2006.

(7) Notwithstanding any indications contained within the information
accompanying the application, the development hereby approved shall not be
commenced until full details of proposed sewage disposal, foul water and
surface water works have been submitted to and approved in writing by the
Local Planning Authority. Such a scheme shall comply with the requirements
of Circular 03/99: Planning requirement in respect of the Use of Non-Mains
Sewerage incorporating Septic Tanks in New Development. The details so
approved shall thereafter be implemented prior to the first occupation of the
dwellings.

To secure the satisfactory drainage of the site in accordance with Policy
ENV17 of the Solihull UDP 2006.

(8) Before the development hereby approved is commenced, an amended
Interpretative Report on Ground Investigation shall be carried out based on
the end users of the scheme herby approved being the occupiers of
residential dwellings and submitted to the Local Planning Authority for
approval. Any remedial works required as a result of the amended report shall
be implemented as approved prior to the first occupation of the development.

To ensure that the development can be carried out safely without
unacceptable risks to future occupiers in accordance with Policy ENV16 of the
Solihull UDP 2006.

(9) Prior to the commencement of any work on site, all existing trees/hedges
and large shrubs except those agreed for removal, shall be protected by
barriers and/or ground protection, in accordance with the recommendations
set out in BS5837:2005. The tree protection measures shall be implemented
and maintained on site as approved. The protection areas shall be kept free of
all materials, equipment and building activity during the site development, and
ground levels within the protected areas shall not be raised or lowered. Where
utility runs cannot be avoided within root protection areas, a method
statement shall be submitted, setting out how the works will be carried out, in
accordance with NJUG Vol 4 Issue 2: "Guidelines for the Planning, Installation
and Maintenance of Utility Apparatus in Proximity to Trees".

To safeguard as many natural features as possible in accordance with Policy
ENV14 of the adopted Solihull UDP 2006.

(10) Notwithstanding any indications contained within the application
submissions, the development hereby approved shall not be occupied until full
details of both hard and soft landscape works have been submitted to and
approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority and these works shall be
carried out as approved. These details shall include proposed finished levels
or contours; means of enclosure and boundary treatment; car parking layouts;
other vehicle and pedestrian access and circulation areas; hard surfacing
materials; minor artefacts and structures (e.g. furniture, play equipment,
refuse or other storage units, lighting etc.); retained historic landscape
features and proposals for restoration. Soft landscape works shall include
planting plans; written specifications (including cultivation and other
operations associated with plant and grass establishment); schedules of
plants, noting species, plant sizes and proposed numbers/densities where
appropriate; implementation programme.

To minimise the effect and enhance the character of the development in
accordance with Policy ENV2 and ENV14 ‘Trees and Woodlands’.

(11) All hard and soft landscape works shall be carried out in accordance with
the approved details. The works shall be carried out prior to the occupation of
any part of the development or in accordance with a programme agreed in
writing with the Local Planning Authority. If within a period of 5 years from the
date of planting of any tree, that tree or any tree planted in replacement for it,
is removed, uprooted, destroyed, dies or becomes seriously damaged or
defective, another tree of the same species and size as that originally planted
shall be planted at the same place within the next planting season (October-
March), unless the Local Planning Authority gives its written consent to any
variation.

To minimise the effect and enhance the character of the development in
accordance with Policy ENV2 and ENV14 ‘Trees and Woodlands’.

(12) Any tree, hedge or shrub scheduled for retention which is lost for any
reason during development works, shall be replaced with a tree, hedge or
shrub of a size and species to be agreed in writing with the Local Planning
Authority and planted during the first planting season after its loss.

To retain the character of the landscape in accordance with Policy ENV14
‘Trees and Woodlands’.

(13) Notwithstanding any indications contained within the application
submissions, development shall take place until there has been submitted to
and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority a plan indicating the
positions, design, materials and type of boundary treatment to be erected,
both internally and externally to the site. The boundary treatment shall be
completed before the building(s) is/are occupied. Development shall be
carried out in accordance with the approved details.

To minimise the effect and enhance the character of the development in
accordance with Policy ENV2 and ENV14 ‘Trees and Woodlands’.

(14) Notwithstanding any indications contained within the application
submissions, full details of the extent of the residential curtilages to serve
each of the proposed dwellings shall be submitted to and approved in writing
by the Local Planning Authority. Only the areas of land so approved shall be
used for the purposes of private amenity space.

In the interests of the visual amenities of the area and the openness of the
Green Belt in accordance with Policies ENV2 and C2 of the adopted Solihull
UDP 2006.

(15) No illumination of any external area of the site shall take place except
with the prior written consent of the Local Planning Authority and in
accordance with details submitted to and approved by them.

In the interests of the amenities of the area in accordance with Policy ENV2 of
the Solihull Unitary Development Plan 2006.

(16) No development shall commence on site until a photographic record of
the building has first been obtained in accordance with a brief to be first
agreed in writing by the Local Planning Authority in consultation with the
Warwickshire County Council Archaeological Information and Advice Team.
The record shall be deposited with the Warwickshire County Council
Archaeological Information and Advice Team prior to work commencing.

To ensure adequate opportunity for site research and recording in accordance
with Policy ENV8 of the adopted Solihull UDP 2006.

NOTE: Noise During Construction: Noise from construction and associated
works has the potential to cause disturbance to neighbouring residents. In
order to minimise this, this Authority would normally recommend that any work
audible beyond the boundary of the site should only be carried out between
the hours of 8.00 am to 6.00 pm on Mondays to Fridays and 8.00 am to 1.00
pm on Saturdays; there should be no noisy works carried out on Sundays or
Bank Holidays. Best practicable means to prevent noise from the site should
also be employed as defined in British Standard BS 5228 Part 1: 1984 (or its
successors/revisions). Failure to keep these hours or to employ best
practicable means to control noise could lead to the service of an enforcement
notice under Section 60 of the Control of Pollution Act 1974. We would
encourage applications for prior consent under Section 61 of the Act,
particularly where the construction and/or demolition phases(s) may be
prolonged or if work may be undertaken beyond the aforementioned hours.
Please contact the Contact Centre (0121 704 8000) for further details.

Burning of Refuse on Demolition and Construction Sites: Because of the
potential for nuisance to neighbours, burning of refuse prior to or during the
construction phase is not generally acceptable and may be contrary to waste
regulation legislation. If you do have special circumstances, such as a
requirement to dispose of wood infected by disease or insects, please contact
the Contact Centre on (0121 704 8000) for further details.

Dust Control on Demolition and Construction Sites: Because of the potential
for nuisance to neighbours and damage to property, reasonable steps to
reduce dust emissions should be employed, particularly during any demolition
works and in periods of dry weather.

NOTE: A planning agreement/obligation under Section 106 of the Town and
Country Planning Act 1990 relates to this site.

The decision to grant planning permission has been taken having regard to
the policies and proposals in the Solihull Unitary Development Plan 2006 set
out below, together with all other relevant material considerations, including
Supplementary Planning Guidance, and the particular circumstances and
reasons summarised below.

RPG11 Regional Planning Guidance for the West Midlands (2004)
RR1 Rural renaissance
T2 Reducing the need to travel

Solihull UDP 2006
ENV2 Urban Design
ENV13 Protected Species
ENV14 Trees and Woodlands
T1 An Integrated and Sustainable Transport Strategy
T13 Car Parking Provision
H1 Provision of Housing Land
H4 Affordable Housing
H5 Density, Design and Quality of Development
C2 Control of Development in the Green Belt

Solihull Draft Local Plan
P4 Meeting Housing Needs
P5 Provision of Land for Housing
P7 Accessibility and Ease of Access
P9 Climate Change
P10 natural Environment
P14 Amenity
P15 Securing Quality Design
P17 Green Belt/Countryside

Government Guidance
National Planning Policy Framework

SPGs
Rural Buildings Conversion Guidance
Vehicle Parking Standards and Green Travel Plans

In reaching this decision the Council is mindful of the particular circumstances
and reasons set out below, namely:

This application seeks consent to convert existing brick built barns at the site
to provide 5 dwellings, and to demolish 4,941sqm of existing agricultural and
industrial buildings to be replaced with 8 new dwellings. The buildings to be
converted are capable of being so without major rebuild or alteration works,
and the new build dwellings will result in a marked improvement to the
character, appearance and openness of the area. The proposal, that seeks to
redevelop this previously developed site, therefore constitutes appropriate
development in the Green Belt.

The proposal will not result in any undue impact upon neighbour amenity and
will not prejudice the health and well being of any important trees on or near
to the site. Although no affordable housing will be provided on site, a
contribution via a S106 agreement for such housing provision elsewhere will
be provided.

Notwithstanding the above, the site is located within an unsustainable
location. However due to the considerable improvements to the character,
appearance and openness of the site that would be generated by the
proposal, and the guidance in relation to such issues contained within the
NPPF, on balance it is considered that the environmental benefits of the
scheme justify the grant of permission for this unsustainable form of
development in highway terms.

								
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